2024 Georgia Draft Law on Foreign Influence Transparency


On April 3, 2024, the Georgian Dream party registered in the parliament the draft Law of Georgia on Foreign Influence Transparency (“the Georgian draft law”). The Georgian draft law is identical to the draft Law of Georgia on Transparency of Foreign Influence #07–3/293; 14.02.2023 that was withdrawn from parliament following mass protests against it by a broad cross-section of Georgians in March 2023. The only notable difference is the replacement of the term ““agents of foreign influence” with the term “implementer organization of foreign power’s interest.”

The Georgian draft law is similar to other laws, specifically targeting non-governmental organizations (NGOs) for the purpose of stigmatization. This group of foreign influence registration laws includes the Russian foreign agents law (2012), the Kyrgyz Law on Foreign Representatives (2024), Israel’s NGO law (2016), the draft El Salvador foreign agents law (2012), Hungary’s NGO transparency law (repealed) (2017), and the draft foreign agents law in the Republika Srpska (2024). 

These contrast with other laws and legislative proposals, including in the European Union (proposal), United States, United Kingdom, Australia, and elsewhere, that do not specifically target NGOs but instead focus on providing transparency for certain types of activities undertaken on behalf of a foreigner or foreign government. These laws and initiatives regulate relationships involving all entities and individuals without singling out NGOs and independent mass media.

Since the introduction of the draft law, leaders of multilateral institutions, including the Council of Europe’s Secretary General and the NATO Secretary General, have said the revival of the draft Law “raises serious concerns” and “will undermine the whole idea of making Georgia a stronger democratic society.” The European Union’s top spokesperson added, “Transparency should not be used as an instrument to limit civil society’s capacity to operate freely.”

The text of the draft law is also available on the Georgian parliament website.